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Pedro de la Rosa Q&A

Pedro de la Rosa has driven for three Formula 1 teams so far this year, but has yet to compete in a Grand Prix, but that is all going to change this weekend as the Spaniard is to make a return to Grand Prix racing at his home race in Barcelona. De la Rosa has taken over the reins of the second Jaguar alongside Eddie Irvine after Luciano Burti made way last week by suddenly jumping ship to the Prost team. De la Rosa himself briefly courted a test drive with the French team after losing his original race seat with Arrows to Enrique Bernoldi earlier in the year. The 30-year-old settled on a test role with the Big Cat with a view to racing in 2002, but the move has come good early and de la Rosa will once again find himself on the grid on Sunday to take his 34th Grand Prix start. Autosport.com caught up with a surprised de la Rosa to talk about his new position, Formula 1 politics and Jaguar's true potential



"This is very special because it's my return to being a racing driver and doing what I really wanted to do. I went to Imola last weekend and it was very hard for me to watch because this was the first race of the season that I was actually there and not in it and it was difficult. I did not expect this, I really didn't. I just got on with my job and did what the team told me and I'm extremely happy. I just cannot wait until Barcelona."



"It's like everything I think it's good but also I would probably have preferred not to start on my home Grand Prix because there will be a lot of expectation and it will be better for me if I can keep a bit quiet. But when these things happen they just happen."



"No I was not happy because obviously I wanted to race. I am a racer, but nevertheless I was quite happy to be with Jaguar as a test driver because inside myself I knew that I would drive next year. It's very different being a test driver knowing that you're working for yourself and your car and for the team, than when you are just testing. But it is never what I wanted. Being a test driver once you've had a race seat is not what you want."



"We'll see more in the next races because I think we have put in a lot of effort in developing the car. Wherever we are in the next races and in Barcelona is not where we want to be because we are aiming high. It will come."



"I had a very good relationship Luciano and the days that we worked together were very good. He's a very technical guy and he likes to discuss what is going on with the car a lot, which I like. But I think he has a great opportunity with the Prost team, it's just that we have followed different paths.



"It's much better to be racing and testing, rather than just testing, because every time I test the car it is two, three or four weeks in between. Many times you sit in the car and there are a lot of things you haven't tried because the car is changing every week. And also with the tyres, we have to adapt to the new tyres because they are developing too quickly for a test driver. You have to race and test because then the evolution is constant."



"I think we are different, but nevertheless we are compatible because I know Eddie and he knows me. We'll see. This is just a starting point. I have never had any problems with my team mates."



"I think we just have to keep working and try to achieve points, soon, and that's it. The car is reliable so we just need a little more speed to get into the points. It's very tough this year because you have, I think, three teams that are far ahead of everyone else - Ferrari, McLaren and Williams and that is six cars. So to get any points will be a hard job for any team outside those three."



"I think we're doing a good job. We started very early and we didn't start from scratch so we had already done some work in the factory. I think it's ok. It will get better, but my main concern is not traction control at the moment. There are so many other things at the moment that I have to get to grips with.



"I don't know, I think Bobby [Rahal] and Niki [Lauda] are pushing for what is best for the team and it's their decision. I think it's mainly because I will be here next year so it just makes sense for me to start early and also Luciano can have a good chance with Prost for the future, so it's better for everyone."



"When I signed for Jaguar, I signed to be the test driver, full stop. We never discussed racing, but obviously as a test driver, you are the reserve driver and my job is not only to give information to the team, but also to prove that I am quick. I have more work to do now than before so I'm going to be spending as much time as possible in the car. I'm still not 100 percent with the car yet, especially with the tyres because they keep changing so much that I haven't really had a go with the new spec."

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